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Audit Finds Major Flaws With Tech And Lack Of Training In LA County’s Voting System

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 27: A voter (2nd R) checks in before entering a voting booth during early voting for the California presidential primary election at a new L.A. County ‘Mobile Vote Center’ in Grand Park on February 27, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. Los Angeles County and several other counties in California have transitioned from polling places to ‘vote centers’ which allow residents the freedom to vote in any vote center in the county. California is one of 14 states participating in the Super Tuesday vote on March 3.  (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Mario Tama/Getty Images
A voter (2nd R) checks in before entering a voting booth during early voting for the California presidential primary election at a new L.A. County ‘Mobile Vote Center’ in Grand Park in Los Angeles, California.

The findings from an independent audit released last week show numerous problems with L.A. County’s $300 million voting system. The audit, conducted by Seattle-based Slalom Consulting LLC, shows design and testing issues with the voter check-in technology, a shortage of electronic poll books and a shortage of call center staff to help with technical assistance.

The findings from an independent audit released last week show numerous problems with L.A. County’s $300 million voting system. The audit, conducted by Seattle-based Slalom Consulting LLC, shows design and testing issues with the voter check-in technology, a shortage of electronic poll books and a shortage of call center staff to help with technical assistance.

The March 3 primary shed light on these issues when voters at some sites found themselves in long lines and breakdowns in the new technology. According to the Pasadena Star-News, this recent audit follows an internal audit conducted by the L.A. County Registrar’s office.Slalom recommends several efforts including starting staff recruitment earlier, enhancing training and call center support, improving transportation between sites and more. The challenges with the new voter system have some concerned as we look toward the November election. Gov. Newsom and other state and local leaders are requiring vote-by-mail ballots to be sent to every registered voters in L.A. county.

Today on AirTalk, we discuss the voter system challenges and what’s being done to address them. Do you have thoughts? Call 866-8993-5722. 

Guests:

Michael Alvarez, professor of political science at Caltech and co-director of the Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project, which conducts research and does outreach with public officials; he tweets

Fernando Guerra, professor of political science and Chicano/Latino studies and director of the Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University; member of the KPCC Board of Trustees

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